Q:

What is the treatment for basal cell carcinoma?

A:

Quick Answer

Basal cell carcinoma can be treated with topical medications, electrodesiccation and curettage, surgical excision, Mohs surgery and freezing, explains Mayo Clinic. Advanced cancer is treated with vismodegib, which prevents the cancer from growing.

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What is the treatment for basal cell carcinoma?
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Full Answer

Electrodesication and curettage is a procedure that removes small cancers with the use of a curette and an electric needle, according to Mayo Clinic. Surgical excision can be used to treat larger cancers. During the procedure the doctor cuts out the lesion with a margin of healthy tissue.

Mohs surgery is a procedure that is recommended for recurring, large, deep and fast growing cancers, explains Mayo Clinic. The doctor removes the cancer layer by layer and examines each slice under the microscope, until no more cancer cells are visible. Thin lesions that do not extend deep into the skin are treated with cryosurgery, which involves freezing the cancer with liquid nitrogen.

Basal cell carcinoma is a type of skin cancer that originates in the basal layer of the skin, describes Mayo Clinic. Risk factors include chronic sun exposure, radiation exposure, fair skin, exposure to arsenic and inherited skin disorders. Men are more likely to develop basal cell carcinoma than women and most cases occur in adults who are 50 years or older. Basal cell carcinoma that develops on the face, ears or neck, appears as a pearly white bump. Lesions that develop on the chest or back have a flat, scaly or flesh-color appearance.

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